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3 lawsuits settled in deadly US 30 pileup

– At least three of the lawsuits stemming from a deadly January crash in New Haven have been settled.

Early this year, families of those killed and those injured sued Scott A. Saunders and the trucking company for which he worked, Kutzler Express.

On Jan. 8, Saunders’ semi crashed into a stopped or slow-moving line of cars on U.S. 30 just west of Doyle Road.

The six-vehicle wreck killed two people and injured seven others.

Killed were Suzanne K. Stephenson, 65, of Monroeville and Sandra Dealey, 43, of Convoy, Ohio. Both women were traveling alone in separate vehicles. They were wearing seat belts and died of blunt-force trauma, authorities said.

Their families sued in federal court. Four survivors of the crash – Meredith Ritchie, Robert Gardner, Fred Pottschmidt and Ryan Swart – sued in federal court in late April.

Those three lawsuits were settled in mediation and dismissed, according to court records. Another case was opened by Marsha Sarrazin, another of the injured, in Allen Superior Court. The status of that case was unclear in court records.

Police said at the time that the light at the intersection turned green and traffic was starting to move forward when Saunders failed to slow down and rear-ended the vehicles.

The amounts of the settlements were not available in court documents.

A representative from Wisconsin-based Kutlzer Express declined to comment on the case, referring calls to the company’s Fort Wayne attorney. The attorney was not available for comment Thursday afternoon.

No charges have been filed.

rgreen@jg.net

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